Seattle Municipal Court Hon. Karen Donohue, Presiding


Court Programs Assisted by RPEG Staff

Research, Planning and Evaluation Group (RPEG)

RPEG Analysts provide planning, evaluation and analytical expertise in the following operational and programmatic areas at SMC. The purpose of the courts Research, Planning and Evaluation Group (RPEG) is to increase the effectiveness, efficiency, and accountability of Court programs and services.

Who We Are and What We Do

Rich Cook
Rich Cook
Lead Strategic Advisor

Rich is RPEG's Lead Analyst, supervising staff and coordinating projects. Rich joined the Court as a Policy and Program Analyst in 2007. Rich's work focuses on improving SMC programs and services by applying data analysis, strategic planning and program evaluation. Prior to joining SMC, Rich worked in analyst roles for Portland Parks & Recreation, U.S. Small Business Administration and as a program coordinator for Seattle Public Schools. Rich graduated from Colby College in 2003 with a B.A. in Political Science and Psychology. He received an M.P.A. from the University of Washington's Evans School of Public Affairs in 2007.

Suzie Burton
Suzie Burton
Strategic Advisor

Suzie began working with Seattle Municipal in December of 2012 as a Policy and Program Analyst. Having previously worked at the Kent Municipal Court as a Court Clerk, at King County Superior Court working with their At-Risk Youth Program, and at US Pretrial Services and Probation as a Data Quality/Statistical Analyst, Suzie comes to the Court with a varied background in the court system. Most recently she worked at the Washington State Hospital Association conducting data analysis on healthcare reform, health insurance, and government programs. She has a Bachelors in Sociology with a focus on Society & Justice from the University of Washington, and a Masters in Public Administration from Seattle University.

Gina Peterson
Gina Peterson
Strategic Advisor

Gina joined RPEG as a Policy and Program Analyst in April 2016. Previously, Gina was a Project/Program Manager for King County Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention where she coordinated and managed a variety of detention projects including jail system upgrades, analytical data requests, budget preparation and population forecasting. Prior to working for King County, Gina lived in Washington D.C. where she worked for the Administrative Office of U.S. Courts as the Bankruptcy Court Program Manager within the Statistics Division. She also worked as a Research Assistant with the U.S. Sentencing Commission. Gina has experience in criminal justice data analysis, performance measurement and evaluation. Gina received her M.A. in Criminology from the University of Maryland and a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology from the University of Michigan. In her spare time, Gina enjoys spending time with her family, arts and crafts, volunteering, and exploring the Pacific Northwest.

Tricia Lapitan
MSA, Community Court

Tricia Lapitan started her relationship with the Court as the first Community Court volunteer in March 2005, and was hired a few months later to support the program as a Management Systems Analyst. She is responsible for program development, community service coordination, analysis/reporting, and overseeing the Community Court AmeriCorps program. Tricia received her J.D. from Valparaiso University School of Law and holds licenses to practice law in Illinois and Washington states. She has practiced Family, Probate, and Poverty Law, and also has extensive Project Management experience in the wireless industry. Tricia has received national recognition as a community leader and advocate for the homeless as Founding Executive Director of, including an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show. Her long history of service to the community includes chairing the Salvation Army William Booth Center Advisory Council and pro bono work as a volunteer attorney for the King County Bar Association.

Katie Truelove
Katie Truelove
Strategic Advisor

Katie Truelove has joined the Court's Research, Planning, and Evaluation Group as a Policy and Program Analyst. Katies previous position was as a Senior Planning and Policy Analyst at the New York City Department for the Aging. She also has experience doing grant writing, program analysis and development for non-profit organizations in New York and California and forensic social work mitigation with courts of various jurisdictions. Katie received a Bachelors of Science in Psychology from California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo in 2004 and a Masters in Social Work from Columbia University School of Social Work in 2008 with a concentration in Social Enterprise Administration. Katie relocated from New York City with her family in 2013 and has enjoyed exploring the wonderful neighborhoods, beautiful parks and hikes, and delicious coffee that Seattle has to offer.

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